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U.s. 38, Japan 15, United States 14, Us 10, Bahrain 10, Plavix 8, Tokyo 8, Daiichi 8, Ali 7, Pakistan 6, New York 6, Fukushima Daiichi 6, Libya 6, America 5, Cnn 5, Raymond Davis 4, Cia 4, George Takei 4, Purina 4, Eastern Libya 4,
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  CNN    CNN Newsroom    News/Business. New.  

    March 16, 2011
    1:00 - 3:00pm EDT  

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representative of what was happenin reporter: barnes says he and the team were lucky they were able to leave with their lives. but they won't forget what they left behind. thelma gutierrez, cnn, los angeles. >> "cnn newsroom" continues right now with ali velshi. >> have a great afternoon. i'm going to pick up where you left off. more than ever, when we talk about the nightmare in japan, we're really talking about two nightmares. the nuclear one and everything else. again today, fire broke out at that devastated fukushima daiichi plant. and another blast of radiation escaped, for reasons still not entirely clear. the few remaining workers had to leave but they came right back in even greater numbers when the danger eased. this crisis stems from overheated fuel rods but elsewhere in japan, a cold snap, including snow, adding to the misery. searching, supporting, surviving, all of it is made more grueling because of the weather. officially the death toll topped
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4,000, with more than 8,000 considered missing. this woman is scouring the rubble for her uncle. she thought she may have found his shoe. the nation heard from the emperor, reserveder pot direst of national emergencies. the emperor act key per act hes heart is broken. the volunteer utility workers who have been exposed to life-threatening radiation levels ots fukushima daiichi. their company hasn't released personal information about them but a japanese newspaper says one of them is 59 years old, 6 months away from retirement. we heard this from a plant worker's wife -- >> >> translator: her husband's working at site in the face of danger of exposure to radiation but wants him to do his best. she says he's relied by e-mail
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indicating a serious situation. he told her to take care of her herself because he won't be home for a while. >> a lot more to report on the nuclear front. for a while today, traces of radioactive cesium and iodine found in tap water in fukushima, 50 miles away from the stricken plant. later the water was clean and officials stressed there was never danger to human health. authorities want to flood one of the super hot reactors with seawater dropped from a helicopter. earlier flight was aborted when the radiation spiked. cnn's stan grant has been watching developments and many others. he joins me from tokyo with the latest. after 2:00 a.m. what's happening at the plant? what's happening in tokyo? we've had more tremors today. >> reporter: yeah, more tremors. the tremors are a reminder the country's going through so much and not out of the woods. the tremors take everyone back to the catastrophic event that started all of this.
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what's going on at the power plant? ali, many questions as answers now. what is actually happening? what's happen. ing with the radiation? what do they peak? what is in them? what radioactive elements are they talking about? it was dangerous today to force the evacuation of the faceless 50, as they're calling brave men staying in there to battle the last line of defense trying to bring this uncontrol. they went and came back later. they've been joined by others, about 180 workers now in there. as you mentioned, they had to abort that attempt by helicopter to drop water on it because of the radiation levels. then you found the radioactive material in the drinking water in fukushima. telling people they can still drink the water and it's not going to do harm, it's one thing. getting them to believe it with so much happening, that's another because, ali, information is flowing from the government but the people are filling the gaps with their fear. >> stan, it has been confusing.
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certainly confusing to us over here when we hear it's safe, it's tremendously dangerous, it's safe, it's tremendously dangerous. what's the general feeling on the ground in japan? first of all there remains some degree of disorientation because of the continuing shakes and aftershocks. is there some sense this is getting better or it's still very precarious? >> reporter: very precarious. you know, you are dealing with multiple events here. of course the earthquake, the tsunami, devastation, relief effort, rescue effort, now the nuclear crisis as well. many foreigners just had enough and they've headed for the exit. they've gone to the airports. we've seen long queues there. they don't trust the information they're getting. they don't know whether they're being lied to, they just don't know. that's the question, you just don't know. all day i've tracked this well into the night. sometimes in one hour you can get two or three different briefings from different agencies. sometimes they conflict. sometimes contradict.
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it's overwhelming, in many respects. but the prime minister's joining -- forming a joint task force, going try to bring these things together, streamline the information and get it out there. still, the questions still remain. we don't skr krihave critical a about what's going on, how much damage. until we get that the fear's going to remain. >> it's got to be hard to get on with your daily life. stan grant in tokyo now. uncertainty. what we do know is what we can measure. we don't know how dangerous the radiation is over the fukushima plant. we know there are winds. winds determine some of that danger correct. the winds at this point are blowing offshore. that couldn't be a better direction. >> right. >> any other direction would be bad. this is a perfect direction for the wind. now it can't last because weather patterns come and go. right now other people are saying, especially in hawaii and
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in america, wait a minute, blowing offshore, yes, maybe that's good for japan. >> i've heard that. could that kind of radiation that we're not certain about how damaging it is, have any affect in hawaii and certainly into the united states? >> depends on the isotope that comes out of the plant. the radiation that comes out is like a sparkler, and it's gone, in ten seconds, it's not radioactive any longer. that would never make it over to america in ten seconds. but there are isotopes that can cling on to humidity, pieces of moisture that can get into the atmosphere and possibly make it somewhere. at this point, it looks like a lot of this gets back up toward russia and maybe toward alaska though there's not, to keep in mine, not enough of a radiation release right now to occur. we've watched all of the models. i'll show you this later on during the day. this is the north pole. i never use this model ever. you have america. you have europe. you have russia.
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you have japan. and so modelers, the u.s. government, can see every level of the atmosphere. and if a piece of radiation, a big piece of radiation, a meltdown occurs, they will be able to run the models and figure out where that ra radiation's going to go. >> if there's a meltdown, as we know from chernobyl, this can kae. we have been talking about the amount of radiation that is likely released. it is not likely to have had some major effect across ocean. >> slight breaking news we haven't had on air yet. fukushima daiichi is what we have been talking about. >> right. >> shawn, zoom in. there's another plant ten miles south of there and they have issued a ten kilometer radius evacuation to that plan. this has literally happened in the past few hours. >> what is that? a fire? >> we literally doesn't know. >> some emergency.
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>> enough of an emergency that the people that are living around this plant are being forced to move. there's already a 30 kilometer around daiichi. >> must be unsettling to not know. he made the point, there are people who don't think the government's lying to them, they just don't know whether everybody's got the right information. it does seem to be changing for us. >> would you want to be in that reactor? >> if i didn't know, i'd rather get out. but that's hard for people struggling in the aftermath of an earthquake. thanks for following up on this. keep us posted on this fukushima. experts say no need for americans to worry about the radiation coming from japan, as chad told us. why is there a rush on pills that help protect you against radiation exposure? i'm going to tell you about that. our social media question of the day. should nuclear power be used as a source of energy? why or why not? join the discussion on my blog, cent.com/ali. post to facebook or twitter accounts that you see right
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if fever, unexplained weakness or confusion develops, tell your doctor promptly. these may be signs of ttp, a rare but potentially life-threatening condition, reported sometimes less than two weeks after starting plavix. as japan's nuclear crisis grows a missouri company trying to keep up with demand for potassium iodide which keeps through ro thyroid from absorbing radiation. it's ramping up production lines though experts say there's little chance of radiation from japan spreading to the united states. it is doing very little to calm fears. >> keep it go, keep it going,
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keep it go, because the demand, we've heard from federal agencies, we've heard from state governments, pharmacies, housewives, daycare centers, hospitals, the list goes on and on. we're doing whatever we can to get product to japan as quickly as possible and people in the that are afraid they could be impacted as well. >> emergency management officials say there is no need for people in the united states to ingest potassium iodide. doing so would be ineffective and could cause side effects. on ac 360, our chief medical correspondent dr. sanjay gupta explains when it is necessary to take the supplement. >> reporter: in terms of safety for people around, and we have heard about iodide pills, a lot of -- it's unclear, there's people, some people saying you take those in advance of any exposure. the advice we've been given is it's only in the event of exposure. >> here's the thing about iodide pills. once you take it, you have a certain window of protection, 48 hours. you don't want to take it too
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early because you close the window on yourself. so timing is really key with this. it is protective but you want to take it in the face of an imminent exposure or right after exposure, and then you have protect. if you take it too early, you're not going to get protection when you need it. >> people in all of these different areas are trying to measure radiation doses to get a sense for people that you have -- you have the same thing. >> this is a pocket -- it tells you two things. one since you're wearing it, how much radiation you've been exposed to. this is measuring that. also an alarm, yours does, if you find yourself in an area of too much radiation, it will alarm. you can't see the number, i've been wearing this for 24 hours. it went up .001 very very small amount, probably from normal background radiation. yours is still at zero but likely to go up, and that would be normal. if it got newspaper the one range, so 1,000 times that, that would be of concern. >> the human toll in japan may
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be incalculable, as recovery begins we're starting to assess what could happen to the japanese economy. it's the third biggest in the world, after all. how's that affect you? [ woman ] welcome back, jogging stroller. you've been stuck in the garage, while my sneezing and my itchy eyes took refuge from the dust in here and the pollen outside. but with 24-hour zyrtec®, i get prescription strength relief from my worst allergy symptoms. it's the brand allergists recommend most. ♪ lily and i are back on the road again. where we belong. with zyrtec®, i can love the air®.
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>> translator: this is in kesennuma in miyagi prefecture where 450 people are sheltered. many people have lost homes in the tsunami. the women living in the shelters are cooking here. they say that helping each other is encouraging them to get by. this woman says that there are many people who have lost their houses and they're in the same boat and, therefore, they are cheering each other up and encouraging each other as they live day by day. the people at the shelter says that they are looking for what they can do so that they can go through and get through these troublesome days. this man says that if people help each other, there will be a bright future ahead.
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he says that that is the hope that people here share. while we continue to take account of the human toll of this disaster in japan, we're also starting to take a look at what might happen tonight country's economy. it is the third largest in the world behind the united states and china. the chief economist for ihs, a global economic and financial forecasting firm. good to see you. tell me, before we talk about japan, typically what happens it a country's economy after a major disaster, whether it's an earthquake or something else. what typically happens to a country? >> well, usually there's a hit to growth, which is to say growth goes negative briefly because activity in that particular region comes to a grinding halt. that has an affect on gdp growth. in that quarter, maybe the subsequent quarter. after that, when the reconstruction kicks in, growth accelerates and you have a big
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boost to growth. and that's probably going to happen to japan in the third or fourth quarter. about down in the near term and then significantly up as we get further out. >> what's the difference in japan than from the tsunamis in 2005, the earthquakes in pakistan, the earthquake in haiti? >> well, two things, obviously. the poorer the country, the bigger the effect. so what i was referring to was rich countries, like the u.s. or japan. in places like indonesia or haiti, the effect is longer lasting because they're poorer countries. but as we look at the situation in japan, the big difference has to do with electricity generation. our calculus is that, because of the nuclear power plants that are off-line, there are six or seven of them, also because of coal-fired generation, was off-line, because the coal is soaked basically by sea watt, can't be used, about 10%, 10% of
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japan's electricity power generation capacity is nonfunctional right now. that's a fair amount. and that's creating the problem of the rolling blackouts and it's disrupting japan's manufacturing capacity throughout the country. not just in these prefectures. that's different this time around. >> japan is an interesting country. an importer and exporter, a consumer, very big consumer country, but also a producer. most of the stuff we import here in the united states from japan is automobiles, electronics, technological equipment. what is the effect of what could be happening in japan on the rest of the world, on the global economy? >> well, the bad news/good news is japan has not been that big of an engine of growth. from exports to japan are fairly small. we only export 5% of our total exports to japan. that's less than 1% of gdp, so it's tiny. in that sense, the effect is very small. the bigger, potential impacts on
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the imfport side. the supply chain problems everybody's referring to which is to say that could create disruptions for automobile manufacturers, the for cell phone manufacturers, consumer electronics manufacturers in the united states. and i think that could be bigger. but probably temporary. maybe two, three weeks of disruptions. >> good to talk to you about this. thank vez much for joining us. be sure to tune into "your bottom line" saturday, 1:00 p.m. eastern and suns at 3:00. white house is pushing hard to get americans involved in japan's nuclear crisis. ed henry will explain why it's so important, next.
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i want to go to ed henry at our washington bureau today. still this question of how involved u.s. should be in japan. bottom line, ed, the u.s. has offered a great deal of help. a lot of military there. we've been putting military ships into place. what's the new development? >> reporter: well, the new development in the next few minutes the president will be sitting down with his administrator of the usaid, it's important because the president is going to be briefed on what's going on. when you talk about the details, it's pretty intense. already the u.s. government has
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helped deliver over 7,000 pounds of food and water to relief victims there in japan. you've had over 50 flight missions from the u.s. military in order to try and do search and rescue and help save more people who have been trapped now for days and are maybe clinging to life. and so the bottom line is the president's going get an update in the next few minutes 1:35 eastern time at white house from is usaid administrate somewhere it shows the breadth and depth of how intense the u.s. efforts are to try to help this key ally. >> the other issue of the nuclear reactors, new news what the military is doing with respect to that? >> reporter: yeah, they're bringing in vehicles to try to help cool the reactors, which is obviously a very important step. we've got some interesting kind of new information about what's going on. we've been talking about how in recent days several experts from the nuclear regulatory commission here in the u.s. have actually gone on site to japan to try to help their japanese
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counterparts deal with this. but just in the last hour or so, the head, the chairman of the nuclear regulatory commission in the u.s., was supposed to be on chill testifying and a chairman of the panel said that the head of the nrc had to leave to go to the white house unexpectedly. so we're still trying to dig out what kind of details that involves as to whether there was a briefing, whether or not there was new information he was passing on or information, frankly, he was getting from the administration to bring to capitol hill. it gives you an idea on multiple levels the white house is trying to stay on top of this. >> ed henry. right to cairo. wolf blitzer is on the stone, traveling with hillary clinton, secretary of state. wolf, what have you got? >> reporter: we had a long interview with the secretary of state, ali on four subjects, japan, libya, bahrain, serious strains, by the way, in the u.s.-saudi relations and finally
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her own future. if you have time, i'll go through and give you the headlines. >> please. >> reporter: first on japan, right now, she says it's a minute by minute decision the u.s. is considering but as of right now, as of this minute, the u.s. is not going to urge its citizens, diplomatic personnel, family members, u.s. military, to start evacuating from japan but that could change based on what's going on right now. it's a very, very worrisome situation, pow tensionally she says it could be worse, considerably worse than three mile island in pennsylvania, which occurred back in 1979. she's really worried about what's happening in japan right now. we had a lengthy exchange on that. on libya, i said to her, you know, it looks like gadhafi's winning. she got very, you know, angry -- not angry necessarily but forceful in suggesting gadhafi will not win. he's not winning. i said, look, he's getting ready to move on the rebel forces in benghazi. and she said, you know what?
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the united nations security council is getting ready to move on a no-fly zone resolution. i said what about the chinese and the russians? they might veto. after the arab league endorsed it, they might not. we went back and forth, basically. i said while you guys are talking a lot of libyans are going to die and there's going to be a slotter in benghazi and elsewhere. she recognized the dangers but said adamantly the united states is not going to do anything unless the u.n. security council authorizes anything. she did make it clear, by the way, since the arab league wanted a no-fly zone, she would like the arab league countries to participate in a no-fly zone. saudi arabia, qatar, have a robust air force. why can't they start participating in it. we went back and forth on that. as she clearly is frustrated. the bahrain issue she was upset about saudi arabia's decision
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and the united arab emirates decision to send ground forces to help the king in bahrain. she said think is not acceptable. yes, the u.s. has a close relationship with these countries but there's a difference of opinion right now, serious difference, there's a serious strain in relationship. >> let's get to the core of the first for a second because this has been an issue with respect to bahrain. it's a country where the leadership has had excellent relationships with neighboring countries and the west. it's an important place, as you mentioned, yesterday to american interests. but there is always a danger of bahrain becoming a bit of a proxy war, iran on one side, saudi arabia on the other side, and the u.s. caught up in the middle. is that the dang they're we're looking at here? >> reporter: absolutely. let's not forget, ba raihrain i strogerically important couldn't trip oil-producing country. there's a lot of interest. the protesters are largely shiite. i asked her, are you concerned if these protesters win, the
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shiites in bahrain will align themselves with the shiite majority in iran. and she went back and forth with me on this issue but she made it clear that what the bahraini government is doing, the military, saudi military, uae military, is not acceptable to the us and especially not allowing protesters who have been shot to go to hospitals. she's very upset about this. and as you point out, ali, a lot of strategic and geopolitical interests going on in bahrain. by no means an easy issue. her frustration was evident when we discussed that and discussed libya and japan. what she wants to do, what she doesn't want to do, she was adamantly -- she told me in no uncertain terms -- she doesn't want to be secretary of state if president obama is re-elected and serve in a second term. she doesn't want to be secretary of defense. she done want to be vice
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president of the united states and has no intention for running for president in 2016. she was very forceful on all of the issues. >> it's a good bet somebody as busy as her is doing something interesting. thanks for staying on top of this. some people express concerned as a result of our necessary and extensive kocoverage of what is going on in ja. which is going to continue there's slippage of what's goingen in the middle east. we're very much on this and you are for us as well. this is on wolf's show. she's doing "the situation room" live from the middle east again. tune into that because we will have all of our coverage of japan. we will also have a very, very good and detailed look at what is going on in bahrain in egypt, what is going on in libya. what's developed in tunisia, wolf is doing all of this on his show tonight. make sure you tune in for that 5:00 here on cnn. back to japan now. let's take a look at pictures from sendai. despite all of the chaos that surrounds them, for the most part the japanese have remained
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calm and orderly. japan's culture and how that culture deals with tragedy. a special guest who you'll know as mr. sulu from "star trek."af ? client comes in and they have a box. and inside that box is their financial life. people wake up and realize. "i better start doing something." we open up that box. we organize it. and we make decisions. we really are here to help you. they look back and think "wow. i never thought i could do this." but we've actually done it. [ male announcer ] visit ameriprise.com and put a confident retirement more within reach. [ male announcer ] visit ameriprise.com of some of the annoying symptoms menopause brings. go it's one a day menopause formula. the only complete multivitamin with soy isoflavones to help address hot flashes and mild mood changes. one a day menopause formula.
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nearly 2:30 in japan. sleepless night for lots of people with no end to the quake aftershocks or this building nuclear crisis. shelters are overflowing at the edge of the evacuation zone around the fukushima daiichi plant. the situation there took another scary turn today when a big white plume started streaming from one of the reactors. authorities said it appeared to be a radioactive team -- radioactive steam from a breach
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in reactor's three containment structure. there are four reactors at that plant. the small crew still working at plant was temporarily evacuated until those radiation levels dropped. official death toll has jumped again. it is now 4,314. but nearly 9,000 people are still listed as missing. meantime the weather's addings to misery in the quake and tsunami zone. snow falling on survivors, anyone alive under the debris. freezing temperatures are expected to hang on into next week. other stories that you missed. cia contractor jailed for kill two men in pakistan has been released. raymond davis charged with murder in the january incident. he said he shot them in self-defense. davis earned his freedom, thanks to a provision in pakistani law that allows victims' families to pardon a murderer. sometimes there's a payment to the family known as blood money. a lawyer connected to the case tells cnn more than $1 million was paid.
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we've gotten comment from secretary of state clinton who says the u.s. didn't pay any compensation to those families. so who did it. jury selection in connecticut in the second trial tied to the brutal home invasion and triple murder. komisarjevsky charged with killing a mur and two daughters in in july 2007. faces charges of sexual assault, kidnap, robbery, 21 counts in all. if convicted, he faces the death penalty. his alleged partner in crime is sitting on death row. opening arguments in this trial are expected in september. and hip-hop mainstay nate dogg has died at the age of 41. no cause of death but his health dass has declined after suffering two strokes. nate dogg did solo project but was known as a hook man for some of the biggest names in rap. the standout, regulate, his
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grammy nominated collaboration with warren g.
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last few days we have been seeing disaster footage from japan and watched death tolls rise while survivors continue their search for missing lovged ones. the meft recent numbers from japan show over 4,000 dead, 8,000, almost 9,000 missing. 2,000 have been injured. through all of this one thing we haven't seen much of is violence, chaos, looting, something we've seen in other disasters across the world, even here in the united states. japanese-american actor and activist george takei joins us to talk about how japan is dealing with the tragedy. you will obviously recognize him for his role in 'star trek" or as announcer on the howard stern
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show. how are your friends and family doing in japan? >> i was concerned about them and i checked first thing friday morning. they have all checked in well. the friends are scattered all over the tokyo area and the osaka area a distance from where the tsunami and earthquake happened. so i'm very grateful for that. >> george, let's talk about is there -- is there something culture until japan, the word you gave us, how do you say that? gaman? what does that mean? >> it means to endure with fortitude and dignity, self-restraint, control. because japan is a densely populated country, you have to be respectful of others and exercise self-restraint. and it's really moving and
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powerful to see people who, i'll sure, are experiencing great anguish having lost family and loved ones, to be so orderly and dignified in that. it remains me of when i was growing up as a child in the u.s. interment camps. we had to line up for everything there. and i remember one incident, my mother -- i was a child, we had a little baby, my sister, and we have regularly lined up for medicine for her. i had to go to the bathroom and i told my mother, i need to go, and she said, gaman. hold it. be dignified. and i couldn't. and i slightly wet myself. it was very embarrassing. but it's that that i see again in the pictures that we see on our television screens. it's very moving.
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>> what are the limits of gaman? what point do you -- do the japanese say i'm not sure that the authorities know what they're talking about or what they're doing? is it based on trust for authority, or is it based on something else? >> well, the alternative is to start shouting, complaining, and what is that going to do? it's just going to make the situation worse. so it's better to restrain yourself. if you see that there might be something questionable, you gather together collectively. japan is a very collectivist society. they work in concert with others. and in doing that, you have to exercise restraint as well as endure some people who might not be quite as restrained as you are. >> here's something interesting, though, that collectivist society is very helpful in a
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disaster like this. we have found people going back into those nuclear plants to try and deal with the situation. so this gaman doesn't stop you, dignity and that reserve doesn't stop the japanese from solving the problem and going in and trying to deal with the tragedy? >> well, there again, there's gaman. they are members of a community, so they have -- they know that they are taking a high risk but they bear it, they endure it, fortitude, and for the sake of the others, they go in to keep the situation in the nuclear plants from getting worse. it's a remarkable cultural trait. i think it's a very distinctive thing to the japanese. i'm a third generation japanese-american but grew up with the subject. >> you and i have been tweeting about this. people were interested in
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hearing this conversation and saying we eye wonder what lessons the rest of the world can learn from the japanese and gaman. >> may i add? in the spirit of gaman for american s, everyone, human beings, to help bring aid to the japanese at a crisis time like this. we are all japanese. >> we are all japanese, i saw you tweeted that the other day. the world is definitely the sympathies and the efforts of the world are with japan right now. thanks, george. good to see you. >> thank you. >> george takei, you remember him as mr. sulu from "star trek." cnn is more than breaking news and videos. check out pages like the cnn religion blog at belief.blogs.cnn.com. great stuff on how the japanese and religion helps them cope with the tragedy. when tsunami warning sounds all you can do is run for higher ground. a man has invented a tsunami
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we have breaking news for you right now. cnn has confirmed that four "new york times" journalists coverering the fighting in eastern libya were reported missing today. the journalists are all experienced at war coverage. they are last in contact with their editors in new york on tuesday morning eastern time.
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so more than 24 hours ago. witnessing the flight of rebels from the town of ajdabiya, eastern town of ajdabiya. there were second hand reports of the journalists being swept up by advancing libyan government forces, but nobody could confirm this. at this point, we have confirmed that four missing journalists there are four missing journalists, the beirut bureau chief for "the new york times," steven ferrell, reporter and videographer kidnapped by the taliban in 2009 and rescued by british command douowes two photographers from the new york times have disappeared. tyler hicks and lindsay adrio, lindsay has been on the show a few times. she's a noted photographer for bringing images of people affected by crisis and by tragedy. she has been a friend to our show. she is one of the four "new york times" journalists who have now
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been reported missing in eastern libya in ajdabiya. "the new york times" says their families and colleagues are seeking information about their situation and praying that they have safe. we will continue to follow this story and bring you more on. four new york journalists, reported missing in eastern libya. we'll get more on this and bring it back to you. a want to get to our big "i" today. hard to see damage like this and wonder how anyone could survive. what if there was a tsunami shelter? when a tsunami comes it's almost impossible to get away from it. what if there was somewhere safe to go as soon as the warning sounds? you don't get a lot of time. something that could stand up to the massive, destructive waves. there is one u.s. patented system, you're looking at it. a big red capsule, the statim shelter, an acronym for storm,
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tornado, tsunami interconnected modules. this thing can withstand a tsunami or tornado. made of concrete and rebar tost water. look at this in the case of a tsunami. what would happen? the wave comes, you get into this thing, the wave actually picks it up, it can float, but it's tethered and it stays in place. it floats above the water. it's a lifeboat basically of sorts. here's computer of the statim after the storm hits. it floats on top of the water. i want to talk to the inventor of the system, live from san juan, puerto rico. this is remarkable, if it were to work. how many people can get inside one of these units? >> it's approximately between 50 to 70 people. >> from 7 to 15 people?
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>> 50 to 70 people. >> 50 to 70, 5-0 to 7-0 people? >> yes. it's of considerable size. with enough capacity to serve a large area and the idea is to have them spread in a sway that everybody has a chance to access one within a reasonable amount of time, basically responding to tsunamis in places maybe the warning doesn't reach or there isn't any warning, remote places. >> have you -- have you been able to try something like this out? there's a patent for it. it's not manufactured yet, correct? >> that's correct. we're working. we need research on the development and prototyping. but i can tell you since the 1850s, french inventor has been working with concrete boats and ships, actually the u.s. and world war i commissioned an emergency fleet made completely
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out of concrete. also m.i.t. holds competitions on commeement canoes. this is old technology to put into a bert use to get a resource that's cheap and economical so it's implementable economical so it's implementable in mass
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now more than ever when we talk about the nightmare in japan we are talking about two nightmares, the nuclear and everything else. again today fire broke out at the devastated fukushima daiichi plant. more radiation escapes. for reasons not clear. the workers had to clear and came right back when the danger eased. the crisis stems from overheated fuel rods. a cold snap including snow is adding to the misery. searching, surviving, all of it made more grueling. officially the death toll is over 4,000 with over 8,000 is considered missing. this woman is scouring the rubble for her uncle. the nation heard from its emperor today in an extremely rare event reserved for the direst national emergencies. he said his heart is broke and
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he's deeply impressed by the courage of the survivors. we can't speak about courage without talking about the unnamed volunteer utility workers surely exposed to radiation levels at the nuclear plant. the company hasn't realized any personal information about them, but a newspaper says one is 59-year-old and six months from retirement. we also heard this today from a plant worker's wife. >> she says her husband is working at the site in the danger of radiation, but she wants him to do his best. she says he's reply by e-mail looked serious. he told her to take care of herself because he won't be home for a while. >> we've got much more to report from the nuclear front. for a while today, fraiss of radioactive iodine and seize yum for found in tap water from
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fukushima city. later, the water was clean and officials stressed there was never danger to human health. officials want to flood one of the reactors with sea water. a flied flooit was aborted when radiation levels spiked. now a separate facility is raising concerns. the government has evacuated a six-mile rate yus of the fukushima daini plant there. the four reactors are all shut down and for now everything appears to be under control. that is still far from the case at the daiichi. cnn's tom foreman brings us up-to-date on what's gone wrong. >> this is the fukushima daiichi plant before the earthquake and tsunami. here are the nuclear reactors we're talking about. numbers 1, 2, 3, 4. here's what they look like now since the terrible events.
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they've been having persistent problems keeping flow running to numbers 1, 2, and 3 trying to cool down the reactor cores and keep them from overheating, possibly melting down. but the real issue is number 4. it was not even operating at the time of the earthquake, but outside the hardened case that holds the active nuclear ingredients, outside is a storage area for the spent nuclear rods, which are still radioactively hot. they're kept in water so that they don't burst into flames. the fear is that the water has drained down and that, in fact, that's what's causing these fires. if they are exposed, one nuclear expert told me you could not get within 50 yards of this without getting a fatal dose of radiation just as importantly, if they're burning, all of the ash, smoke would carry seize yum with it, the same product that came out of chernobyl and caused all the problems. let's widen the area.
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this is the 12-mile radius in which they ordered evacuations of p about 70,000 people. said nobody can be in here. now it's expanded beyond that to a 19-mile rat ydius. out here the concern is that people need to stay inside with their windows closed, homes airtight. no air conditioning or ventilators. keep laundry indoors, everything they can to keep from coming in contact with any seize yum if it's coming away from that, if this is the source of the fire. you're hearing a lot of ifs here. one reason is there have been significant complaints that for all going on on the ground there there has not been enough communication from the power company and maybe from the japanese government as well about precisely what is happening. the white house here even is concerned about that as people try to get a handle on precisely what is happening in those reactors and all eyes are upon them. >> thanks, tom. you know, japan uses a lot of
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nuclear power. one-fifth of our power in the united states is from nuclear power. this is how confusing this discussion is because we don't really know the effects. chad is here because he's got news on that second nuclear power plant that we're getting some troubled reports out of. this is south of the daiichi. >> daiichi and daini, one and two. it's about seven miles south of daiichi. a bit ago we had a new alert, ten-mile radius, it's hot. it's under control but let's move. that was kind of overlapped by the 30-kilometer that we had for daiichi. but now just issued by the u.s. embassy in japan, a 50-mile radius for all u.s. citizens, saying we've looked at the situation. we understand what's going on. we believe the radiation can go farther, and we're recommending u.s. citizens to be 80 kilometers away or 50 miles away
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from the daiichi plant. that would encompass everything here. >> with steam or things escaping from the plants, there are two issues about the radiation. one of them has to do with the winds. where are the winds going now? >> at least nor the next three days the winds will blow offshore, the plant being right there. and all along the japanese coast, the winds will blow offshore, which for japan is a good thing. it doesn't get better. let's widen our view and take this to maybe a more worse-case scenario. where does it go if there is a much more significant release? because at the moment we don't think the concentrations in there are enough to matter as it blows off. >> correct. it spreads out, moves away, and the isotopes decay to nothing. but where does it zo go? for five days the winds blowing offshore here and around the horn, around the low pressure
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center in the middle part of the pacific ocean. here's the united states, there's alaska, here's russia, here's japan. around that low it goes and that would take any major radiation explosion -- >> and the distinction we have to make is these are not meltdowns. >> right. if a meltdown happened, obviously the government would run all of these models over and over to figure out who had to go where. it appears that a lot of the energy, aloft the radiation, may go to the north of japan. that would be the russian peninsula there. but i am a meteorologist. i know little to nothing about radiation dispersion. but i know what the levels are and where the winds go. we will just try to break it down for you. we're just trying to literally break it down as layman's terms as we can get. >> and as we get more information, we'll share that with our viewers. you and the fellow meteorologists are on top of this. thank you, chad. keep us posted about what goes on with the second plant, daini.
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i want to tell you about something that happened in pakistan. the cia contractor accused of killing two men there was set free. you might be surprised to hear what it took to get him free. here's our social media question of the day. should nuclear power be used as a source of energy? why or why not? join the discuss on my blog or facebook or twitter.
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an american in pakistan, not too popular to begin with, so imagine the sentiment when he shoots and kills two native sons. that's what happened in january. raymond davis said he shot in defense and the u.s. rushed to his defense. first it said he's a diplomat, not true. then it said he should get immunity.
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and key to this, he says the u.s. government paid it. now, that has been flatly denied by u.s. secretary of state hillary clinton, perhaps the possibility the third party paid the sum of money. we're talking blood money. where money is paid to drop the charges.
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because of the covert program here, strikes against militants in the tribal areas. pakistani relations with the u.s. stretched to the breaking point by this. president obama making it clear how high the stakes were for the u.s. when he said, quote, it would be intolerable if mr. davis wasn't given diplomatic immunity and be release released, one said it won't make the pakistani government look better. >> good to talk to you. thanks for the report. i want to get back to our social media vanessa, i'm a big fan of
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wind, too, matthew says no. it may be the leading source of non-greenhouse gases. michael says, absolutely. it's a great source of energy when used responsibly and monitored closely. join the conversation. on my blog, facebook or twitter. so much talk about radiation exposure in japan, we look at how the u.s. military is protecting its crews, delivering much-needed aid to that nation,
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coming up next. %e%e%e%e%e%e%e%ee
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we've had a pretty precipitous drop on u.s. markets. let's go it to the new york stock exchange. alison kosik is standing by. alison, no new developments, the asian markets have done substantially better. we've had a rough day, we've got the dow trading down almost 270 points right now. >> you know what, ali, this all started around 11:00. it's those negative headlines, one after the other, coming out
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of japan. the latest sudden drop comes after comments by the eu's energy commissioner. he receives the situation at the nuclear plants are, quote, out of control. he said a martial meltdown happened and he warned of catastrophic events. the fear index is spiking, 25%, as the dow drops 276 points. those comments clearly had a huge impact on the market today. >> alison, real quick, this whole issue of meltdowns, it gets tricky because it's specific language. but the bottom line is, there hasn't been any new more catastrophic development that justifies this, so this is just itchy fingers on wall street. >> you know, it very well could be. but you know as well as anybody that fear can often drive -- it drives oil prices and it's driving the markets right now. but we could also look at the other side of this.
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the markets had a really nice run-up over the past several months and lots of traders i talk to on a daily basis. they've been predicting a correction that could happen, they were predicting, in the summertime. you know, we're in march right now so we're not too far away from that. so in some way thz is not too unexpected, just no one expected it to come this -- to drop this far this fast, ali. >> alison, thanks so much. we'll keep an eye on the markets. the u.s. military is one of the groups at the forefront of helping quake survivors in japan. our pentagon correspondent chris lawrence is in washington for us. chris, there are concerns out there about u.s. military personnel exposed to the dangers, particularly the nuclear dangers, in japan. what is the u.s. government and military doing to ensure their safety? >> a number of things, ali. i guess first off the bat would
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be get out of the way of the radiation. if you take a look at this map behind me, you can see the ships up in the corner. those used to be a lot closer to the fukushima nuclear plant. they were moved north and offshore to get out of that downwind range of that radioactive plume. also, some of the pilots have been coming back with contaminated with radiation. they've been washed off, their uniforms destroyed. they were given potassium iodine taplets to ward off the effects of radiation. now they've established the 50-mile zone, the no-go zone so to speak, that's also being expanded out for the military. by that, i mean the pilots going in today bringing relief supplies, doing search and rescue missions, they were going within about 70 miles of that plant and they were given some of the pills ahead of time, before they went out on that. also, if you look down here, u.s. military bases, no real danger just yet, but as a
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precauti precaution, with the families that are there, with the american civilians that work there, they're being told, stay indoors as much as possible and shut down your outside ventilation systems. also, if we take a look at the other map as we spin around here, you can see that several ships that were on their way to the pacific side have been rerouted over here to the sea of japan to stay out of the way of that radioactive plume. ali? >> chris, we will watch that with you, too. there have been a lot of responses from military families and members of the military saying that they're very happy to be involved in this relief effort. but obviously the military and government want to be very, very cautious we're not unnecessarily exposing people to these dangers. thanks, chris. want to bring you up to speed. it's about 3:21 a.m. in japan right now, the official death toll is 4314 but over 8,000 are listed as missing. more concern today, the troubled
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fukushima nuclear reactors, we saw what looked like a cloud of smoke rising over reactor number 3. officials saying they believe there was no breach of the containment vessel and it probably was vapor, not smoke. there's also been some developments at a nuclear plant south of that. in pakistan, american cia contractor raymond davis has been released from jail after the families of the two men he killed in january forgave him. the u.s. official says he has left the country. davis said he shot the men after they attacked him. a lawyer closely connected to the case said the families were paid about $1.4 million. the secretary of state hillary clinton said the u.s. did not pay any compensation to the families. four "new york times" reporters have been reported missing in libya. they were in the eastern part of the country covering the fighting. they haven't been heard from since yesterday morning eastern time. all four are experienced in war zones, including steven ferrell who had been kidnapped by the taliban in 2009 and photographer
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lindsay adair yoe, who has been a guest on this show. right now there are many questions about the dangers of radiation and how harmful it could be. it's measured in millisieverts. after me, chad will explain how much of it is out there.
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. >> translator: in the air directly and also make sure that your hair is not outside but is covered. weather is coming into
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japan. in fact, we saw pictures that came in from this morning and there is snow. it's winter. it's a cold place, and this is a hampering rescue effort. but those people without electricity or without their home, this is a real problem. >> millions of households still without power. first it was 6 million, then down to 4 million. trying the rolling blackouts to make sure there's enough power for everybody. the jet stream has come over, a northerly flow. right over korea. my dad in the korean war says his feet were freezing always. the cold front out in the pacific ocean. that is going to be the case for the next i would say four days where temperatures are below freezing definitely at night, like 27 at night. but only up to 35, 36 during the day. like look at tokyo right now, 32. now, we should have an observation from -- sorry. that got knocked down. >> it's likely colder the further you go north. >> absolutely. >> 6 tonight. with the wind chill coming in,
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too. the winds have been blowing at about 30 miles per hour so think about it. it's 30 degrees and then the winds blowing 50 in some spots. and there will be snow, mainly the way the spine works, the topography is in japan, most of the snow will be caught here a lot like it snows in buffalo but the snow doesn't make it all the way to albany or binghamton, right? it's lake-effect but this is just a giant lake called the sea of japan. >> and the winds are still coming this way. the weather system moving this way. >> that's great news for the radiation plume, but it's cold. if you don't have a house or are looking for people, it taxes everything. it taxes your ability to move, to not work without gloves. it taxes everybody's just psyche. then all of a sudden it's snowing. that covers up a little bit of the scent for the dogs out there working. it could be better, but it's still winter. >> more than 4,000 dead, 8,000 still missing.
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thanks, chad. let me know what's going on with the second nuclear reactor if you get any more news. reporters in the field face any number of challenges. reporters covering libya now put their lives at risk. a group of american journalists is is missing. i'll bring you details right after this. so start your business, protect your family, launch your dreams. at legalzoom.com we put the law on your side. launch your dreams. castrol syntec has been reformulated for better performance under the hood. so we gave it a new name. castrol edge with syntec power technology. new name. better formula. it's more than just oil. it's liquid engineering. [ male announcer ] america's beverage companies are working together to put more information right up front. adding new calorie labels to every single can, bottle and pack they produce.
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so you can make the choice that's right for you. ♪ basic. preferred. at meineke i have options on oil changes. and now i get free roadside assistance with preferred or supreme. my money. my choice. my meineke. about 3:30 a.m. thursday morning in gentleman poon. another sleepless night with no end to the quake aftershaocks o nuclear crisis. shelters are overflowing at the edge of the evacuation zone around the fukushima daiichi plant. a big white plume started
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streaming from a reactor today. authorities said it appeared to be radioactive steam from a breach in reactor 3's containment structure. the small crew still working at the plant was temporarily evacuated until the radiation dropped. over 8,000 people are missing and the weather is adding to the misery. snow has been falling on homeless survivors, rescue crews and anyone still alive under all of that debris. freezing temperatures are expected to hang on into next week. now for some other stories you might have missed, a cia contractor jailed for killing two men in pakistan has been released. raymond davis was charged with murder in january. he said he shot in defense. davis has earned his freedom thanks to a provision in law that allows victims' families to pardon a murderer. sometimes there's a payment to the family, commonly known as blood money. a lawyer tells cnn more than $1 million was paid out.
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hillary clinton says the u.s. didn't pay any money to the families. four "new york times" reporters are missing in eastern libya. they've been covering the fighting in the country and they haven't been in contact with their editor since yesterday. the "times" has received secondhand reports that the four were swept up by libyan government forces, but that's not confirmed. all four are experienced in war zones, including stephen farrell who had been kidnapped by the taliban in 2009. he had to be released by british commandos. and photographer lynsey addario who's been on this show a couple of day times. major global crack 0down on suspected pedophiles led to almost 200 arrests with hundreds more expected. investigators in several nations including the u.s., uk and australia took part in what's being called operation rescue. so far they've rescued 230 children. the suspects said to be members of an online forum called boylover.net, operating from a server in netherlands. jury selection has started
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in connecticut. joshua komisarjevsky is charged with killing a mother and her two daughters in july of dwi 07. he faces sexual assault, kidnapping and robbery, 21 counts in all. if convicted he faces the death penalty. his alleged partner in the crime was charged last year and sitting on death row as we speak. opening arguments are expected in september in this trial. in tokyo, people flocking to the airports trying to get out of the country because of nuclear fears. our soledad o'brien was just there. we'll bring you what she saw, next.
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p. in japan today, the death toll is 4,313, but 8,306 people are still listed as missing. 2,282 are injured. meanwhile, there are fears about the growing nuclear situation, so much so that many people are going to the airports to try to leave. cnn's soledad o'brien joins me live from tokyo. you just got back from the airport. what's going on there? >> reporter: yeah. we flew in, our flight was pretty full and crowded, when we got there, late at night japan time, the airport was not packed but we've seen pictures, really, really packed and not even close to the situation at the other airport where more international flights are leaving the country, which is massive lines, some people describing them as three hours, sometimes more, as it snakes inside to outside, people waiting to get out of the country. no surprise when you really understand i think, ali, just
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the sense of distrust, mistrust, fear going on among the people, contradictory information about the nuclear system, the aftershocks are terrifying. there have been many of them, quite strong. we feel them all the time. then sort of a sense of no one knows what's going to happen next, combined with it's brutally cold, a lack of food, a lack of fuel, and lack of information. none of that is a big surprise to me. >> this confusion, contradictory information, it definitely feels like that from here in the united states. is it more so in japan where governments are saying there are dangerous levels of radiation, then there aren't, then there's safety, then we're not sure if this is shut down or there was a leak. how does it feel over there? >> reporter: well, i think that there's a similar sense that someone can go, for example -- someone's going on tv live, government official, talking about how while the situation doesn't seem so bad, people are
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watching live picture of plumes of smoke rising above the daiichi reactors as you were just talking about a while ago. for somebody watching that, they feel like what they're seeing and what they are hearing really doesn't compute. and some of that is just the levels of dissipation, the radiation levels can rise and then fall again. but i think the bigger picture today certainly has been those reactors 3 and 4 and the idea of aborting that planned dumping of water from the helicopter because radiation levels were too high for choppers to fly in, sort of the same thing you see out west in forest fires, a massive dump of water to do a cooling. that had to be aborted. again, as people watch this and say, well, it's said to be safe outside of 30 miles and yet, at the same time, they're pulling -- aborting these missions because they have concerns about radiation levels. it feels sometimes contradictory. but the staff is on the air consistently here. he he did two press conferences
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yesterday trying to give a lot of information and the emperor was on television as well, speaking to the japanese people, which as you know is a very rare event. >> yes. >> reporter: which was both comforting to people, especially the elderly, but also an indication of how severe the crisis is, if the emperor who very, very, very rarely goes on television proactively in a crisis is addressing the people. i think it's sort of that consistently, well, it must be a very bad crisis but everybody is saying remain calm, combined with the temperature, the lack of food, the empty streets, combined with unclear sense of what's going to happen next for everybody and the aftershocks, people are very tense. >> soledad, you just got back from -- or you've been in a place that was very badly devastated by the tsunami. give us some sense. we've seen the pictures and sometimes they tell more of a story. but you were just there. give me some sense of it. >> reporter: yeah. we came out of katz mum ma to go up to na keet ta, now in tokyo. we were looking at rescue
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efforts in that city where they had earthquake damage but even more tsunami damage. it roared through and tsunami damage in a city is just incredible, the debris field amazing. things just pancake and collapse. i actually think there's going to be quite a large death toll there because of the debris, so high, it's hard to see even what's two, three, four, ten feet below as you walk on top of the debris. but the self-defense forces were out sort of prodding with sticks to see what they could see and people were back in the streets a little bit. but it's cold, and for folks who have been displaced, many of them sort of wandering out figuring out what to do next. >> yeah, the cold really is going to hamper the rescue efforts. soledad, thanks so much for your great reporting. we'll continue to follow it with you. i want to turn to bahrain where violence continues to escalate. this is smoke rising -- well, this is a map of bahrain where we're showing you.
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let's take it to pearl square where you can see smoke rising over pearl square where protestors reported hearing gunfire. the square has been a gathering spot for anti-government forces. the police say they dispersed the crowds with tear gas. several doctors say security forces stormed the main hospital in manama. there are reports that staffers were beaten and hiding in rooms. eventually the army told hospital workers they could leave. cnn cannot independently confirm those claims. we were going to keep following the situation -- we are going to keep following the situation and bring you the latest developments on it in the middle east. wolf will have a fair amount on it on "the situation room" 5:00 eastern time. coming up, george takei of "star trek" fame will talk about japan and about gaman, an interesting word you may never have heard of but means a lot to the japanese and may explain how
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they're dealing with the crisis.
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for the last few days we've seen disaster footage from japan and watch death tolls rise while search for loved ones. 4,314 are dead, 8,606 are missing and 2,000 injured. through all of this, one thing we haven't seen much of is violence, chaos and looting, among the japanese people,
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something we've seen in other disasters across the world. even here in the united states. japanese-american actor and activist george takei joined us last hour to talk about how japan is dealing with the tragedy. i asked him what the tragedy term "gaman" meant to him and the japanese. >> it means to endure with fortitude and dignity, self-restrai self-restraint, control. and you know because japan is a very densely populated country, you have to be respectful of others and exercise self-restrai self-restraint. and it's really moving and powerful to see people who i'm sure are experiencing great anguish, having lost family and loved ones, to be so orderly and dignified in that. >> george, what are the limits of gaman? at what point do the japanese say, i'm not sure that the
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authorities know what they're talking about or what they're doing? is it based on trust for authority? or is it based on something else? >> well, the alternative is to start shouting, complaining, and what is that going to do? it's just going to make the situation worse. so it's better to restrain yourself. and if you see that there might be something questionable, you gather together collectively. japan is a very collectivist society, and they work in concert with others. and in doing that, you have to exercise restraint as well as endure some people who might not be quite as restrained as you are. >> here's something interesting, though. that collectivist society is very helpful in a disaster like this. we have found people going back into those nuclear plants to try and deal with the situation. so this gaman doesn't stop you,
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dignity and that reserve, doesn't stop the japanese from solving the problem, going in and trying to deal with the tragedy. >> well, again, there's gaman. they are members of a community so they have to -- they know that they're taking a high risk, but they bear it, they endure it, fortitude, and for the sake of the others, they go in to keep the situation in the nuclear plants from getting worse. it's a remarkable cultural trait. i think it's a very distinctive thing to japanese, and i'm a third generation japanese-american, but i remember growing up with that concept. >> well, people are talking a lot about nuclear energy, whether it's good or bad p for the country. i've put this to you on social media, twitter and facebook and on my blog. i get a lot of responses to a lot of questions. this one is burning up the
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internet. we're putting it to two experts on opposite sides of the issue. i'll talk about it with my stream team on the other side.
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just want to bring you up to
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speed. we had seen quite a drop on the dow, down about 280 points less than an hour ago. it's staging quite a recovery. you wouldn't think it's good news that the dow is only down 178 points but things are improving after some scares about how serious this nuclear event is in japan. let me bring you up to speed. we just can't tell you enough about this issue, about what's going on. in light of what's happened at the nuclear power plant in fukushima, japan, there's been a lot of talk about safety on one hand and value on the other hand of the 104 nuclear plants here in the united states. are the criticisms valid in let's review how a nuclear reactor works. in this case, the particular nuclear reactors were talking about, with chad, that were built 30, 40 years ago. nuclear reactors have changed. there are some zifrnsdifference >> there are better protections now than this building has. there are protections called walk-away safe. you can literally get up from the chair if you are an engineer
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downstairs and walk away and the machine will shut down all by itself. >> that's been a big question on social media, why can't these things just shut down? >> it will shut down with power. >> you need power to stop the rods from overheating. >> correct. the whole thing happens because the uranium -- i'm not aa nuclear engineer, but i've listened to a lot of very smart guys. it's in and it's out. i'm going to do my best to bring it to layman's terms. fuel rods here get very, very hot. they uranium 235, they're excited, their atoms bounce, they get very, very hot. control rods down below, when you separate the rods from each other, with the control rods, you slow down the bouncing around and the amount of heat that can be generated. well, the heat comes when the rods are in water. >> right. >> pure water. not salt water like they're pumping now. pure, pure water. >> so these rods come into the water. >> and they boil.
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big-time. i mean, six atmospheres worth of pressure as in all the steam that's caused moves up the generator and out through the seem valves. >> all the steam here goes out here. >> huge amounts of pressure like the amount of pressure behind a dam at a water hydro plant. that's going to just turn this. >> from here on in, this is just normal energy production. you can do this with coal, gas. you're turning turbines, creating electricity. >> the problem is the water coming in from the ocean to cool this steam back to water to condense it, that water stopped because the power stopped. the backup generator stopped. the batteries stopped eventually. >> and they got flooded. the backup power got flooded by the tsunami. >> the earthquake didn't hurt this plant. it did shut it down, normally shut it down. the tsunami flooded the backup and the backup and the backup and a number of things cascaded from there and that's where we are now. the rods -- >> we do have plants that do this, plants more modern. this brings us to the stream
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team. joining me, paul gunter, the president of reactor oversight and james taylor, a senior fellow at the hartland institute. paul, nuclear plants, good or bad for this country? >> bad. i mean, cliearly what's been noe straighted the fume chkushima i nuclear power is more of a disaster. when you need the power the most, this system will fail you, as has happened. you know, i think what we should remember is is that nuclear power plants, whether they're pressurized water reactors like he showed there, or boiling water reactors like at fukushima, they all shut down when the grid goes down. because 100% of their power for safety systems is is reliant -- >> the grid you mean the electrical grid. when electricity isn't present, they shut down. >> exactly. >> let's bring james in.
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james, paul says bad. you say good? >> well, in terms of the environment and human health, definitely good. because of nuclear power, we do not have many of the alleged environmental harms that have been asserted by paul. for example, not only in the u.s. but around the world, there have been nuclear power plants in operation for decades. the only significant nuclear event was in chernobyl. that's comparing apples to oranges because the system there is entirely different than western systems. what we're looking at in japan, we have the worst possible scenario compounded on itself and we're still unlikely to see any significant human toll as a result. compare that, for example, for the number of humans that die on u.s. highways every day, which is about a hundred. >> talk about comparing apples to oranges. humans dying on highways have nothing to do with humans dying of nuclear exposure. paul, being fair, we're a demanding world. we want cheap and plentiful
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energy, prices of oil and natural gas have been going up. if we do away with nuclear, one-fifth of the electricity in the united states, what do we do? >> well, obviously, you know, the situation is right now that we take these plants one by one, some have to be shut down immediately. some will be phased out. but overall we need to leave this dirty, dangerous and expensive technology in the 20th century and move into the 21st century energy policy with wind, offshore wind. right now off the coast of virginia, maryland, and -- >> paul, i'm going to stop you because this is sort of a fast-moving segment. again, apples and oranges. nobody in the world thinks wind is going to replace the energy that electricity provides. >> that's not true. >> there really isn't. show me one fact that one-fifth of the u.s. -- nobody in america thinks one-fifth of the electricity can come from wind. >> actually, i would disagree with you. like i'm not saying that we're
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going to cut off one-fifth of the energy overnight. what i said was that there are some plants -- we have 23 of these fukushima designs here in the united states, a number of them on the new madrid fault. it's crazy to keep moving forward with old decrepit plant that's are then set on these fault lines o. that's insane. it has to be revisited by an independent evaluation. >> james, is there some middle ground here? i mean, can we -- should we be building nuclear plants with far more redundancy for an earthquake and a tsunami at the same time? >> yes. and we already have substantial safety regulations that require the operators of nuclear power plants to have procedures in place to test those procedures, to go through emergency drills. and keep in mind that for the decades that we've been utilizing nuclear power, without any catastrophes, we are still going to learn from what's happening in japan, which is is not going to be a catastrophe either. so certainly we're going to
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continue to learn and when paul talks about dirty and dangerous, nuclear power is emissions-free and there have been no u.s. fatalities regarding nuclear power. >> paul, last word to you. five seconds or less, is there some amount of safety we can apply to nuclear power plants that would have you change your mind at all? >> well, you know, it's -- first of all, these things openly spill nuclear waste. we're aware -- >> that was sort of a yes or no question. i've got to wrap up my show soon. >> no. i don't think that you can make an inherently dangerous system safe. >> well, i promised you two guests with different views. gentlemen, thanks very much for articulating your views. there's certainly a lot of attention going to this topic. let's discuss it again. come back on the show. paul gunlter, the director of reactor oversight at beyond nuke letter and james taylor. in times of jait need like in japan, nations rally to aid those in need. but there seems to be something different going on for japan. i'll take a look at that in my
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timenow for the "xyz" of it. like other natural disasters, many americans want to help japan's earthquake victims but as of yesterday japan had only garnered $24 million from dough nailgss from americans, mostly corporations. when you compare it to hurricane katrina or the earthquake in haiti, both of those events raised $100 million within the same time period and a lot of that money came from individuals. so far japan has m

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